DOZENS of kangaroos are dying unnecessarily as local drivers struggle to share newly opened and rural roads with their native neighbours.
Precious police time is being taken up by almost daily call-outs for officers to shoot injured kangaroos across Hervey Bay.
While euthanising critically injured wildlife has always been part of the job for the region's police, Acting Hervey Bay Sergeant Craig Lewis can't remember a time when it was more prevalent.
In the past fortnight alone, more than 10 kangaroos have been put out of their misery.
Sgt Lewis said the numbers were greatest in areas such as Kawungan Way and around the back of the Stockland development which up until recently, were just grassy paddocks.
The growing road kill toll is cause for concern for Kawungan residents, including Mandie Houston who has always enjoyed morning walks among nearby mobs.
For many months Ms Houston worried that kangaroos which had become used to the lull in traffic and slow-moving roadwork vehicles along Kawungan Way would not move away fast enough after the road was finished.
Now that her fears have been realised, she hopes local drivers will take more care, particularly at a time when a large number of joeys are hanging about the area.
"A lot of people who have moved into housing developments here are perhaps not used to so much wildlife being around," Ms Houston said.
"It's not a normal suburb out here - the land is not all developed, there is still rural acreage and horses, etc so slowing down and being aware of that will hopefully help drivers to keep their cars and the kangaroos safe."
Sgt Lewis urged drivers to be particularly careful when travelling at dawn and dusk when most kangaroo-related crashes were reported.
Injured wildlife can be reported to 1300 264 625.
Where to take extra care
- Kawungan Way, Kawungan
- North St, Pt Vernon
- Old Maryborough Rd, Pialba
- Pialba Burrum Heads Rd
- Stirling Drive, Pialba
- River Heads Rd
- Main St, Urraween
- Doolong Rd
- Hervey Bay-Maryborough Rd